The borage in my garden keeps on going and going - as one flush of plants fade away, another lot of seedling follow on. Borage self seeds prolifically so I’m not sure whether the plants are all from last year that have just chosen to germinate at different times or whether the new ones are from this year’s early flowers. I let it do its thing and pop up wherever it likes. Plants grow nearly as tall as me, but if it gets a bit unruly, I pull it up and compost it - borage acts in a similar way to comfrey in that it draws potassium from the soil and its juicy stems and leaves rot down quickly.
Borage is a lovely flower, with cornflower blue, five pointed blooms, but the plant itself is a bit rough and hairy. All of the plant is edible and tastes like cucumber. The flowers are lovely as a garnish for salads and soups or you can freeze them in ice cubes - the perfect addition to a glass of Pimm’s. Borage is also known as bee-bread because the bees love the nectar laden flowers so much. When it’s in full bloom, there’s a blue haze over my salad beds and the sound of the bees is quite incredible.
In Spain and Italy, they eat the young leaves and stems in spring soups with other early greens - it grows wild on road sides and field edges along with other foraged plants such as wild garlic, mallow and fennel. An oil is also extracted from the seeds which has similar properties as evening primrose oil.